LONDON – Austrian Airlines (OS) has announced it will resume operations on June 15, following the closure of operations due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic.

The initial restart will focus on European destinations and Tel Aviv in the Middle East, with such steady ramp-ups resulting in around 40 destinations becoming operational by the end of June.

Commenting on the news was Chief Commercial Officer Andreas Otto who expressed great relief over the operations restart.

“We all are pleased that Austrian Airlines is finally flying again. I would like to thank our customers for their patience and understanding. And of course, I would like to thank our employees who stood firm in their commitment to our Austrian Airlines during these last few months”.

“We will also resume long-haul flight service as soon as we have sufficient feeder traffic on short- and medium-haul routes. This could already be the case in July”.

Operations will begin initially with services to London, Paris and Brussels before the further expansion of routes to happen within that same week. The list is as follows:

  • Amsterdam
  • Athens
  • Basel
  • Berlin
  • Brussels
  • Bucharest
  • Dubrovnik
  • Dusseldorf
  • Frankfurt
  • Geneva
  • Hamburg
  • Copenhagen
  • Larnaca
  • Munich
  • Pristina
  • Sarajevo
  • Skopje
  • Sofia
  • Stockholm
  • Stuttgart
  • Tel Aviv
  • Thessaloniki
  • Tirana
  • Varna
  • Zurich

Between June 22-28, the next set of routes to the likes of Belgrade, Graz, Innsbruck, Kyiv, Kosice, Milan, Nice, Prague, Split and Warsaw will also take place.

This ultimately means that the carrier will depart to 37 destinations within the first two weeks of such a restart, representing a five per cent average in capacity compared to the previous year.

It is understood that the airline will begin operations solely with the Embraer E195 and Bombardier Dash 8 Q400 aircraft until demand begins to strengthen.

Austrian has also said that passengers will be required to wear a mouth-nose covering on-board its aircraft as well as at its hub of Vienna.

On top of this, consumers are advised to look at the currently valid entry and quarantine regulations at their destinations when planning such journeys, which may result at elements such as longer waiting times at airport security.

Cabins onboard the aircraft will be extensively clean, with this occurring after every single flight cycle an aircraft operates.

With this pandemic still making ripples in the industry, the carrier has also extended the period for re-booking flights at no charge to the flier, with tickets that have already been booked before June 30 this year for flights until April 30 next year can reschedule for as late as December 2021.

In-all, like with other carriers announcing operational restarts, this is beginning to become the more positive theme out of this pandemic.

As soon as the industry starts to restart, then demand will eventually recover and we can all get back to a place where we are at pre-COVID-19 levels. That cannot come soon enough…